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Proposed value projection hierarchy model for fibreglass reinforced plastic frp products

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  • 1. International Journal of Management (IJM), ISSN 0976 – 6502(Print), ISSN 0976 – 6510(Online),INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF MANAGEMENT (IJM)Volume 3, Issue 3, September- December (2012)ISSN 0976 – 6502(Print)ISSN 0976 – 6510(Online)Volume 3, Issue 3, September- December (2012), pp. 112-120 IJM© IAEME: www.iaeme.com/ijm.aspJournal Impact Factor (2012): 3.5420 (Calculated by GISI) ©IAEMEwww.jifactor.com PROPOSED VALUE PROJECTION HIERARCHY MODEL FOR FIBREGLASS REINFORCED PLASTIC (FRP) PRODUCTS 1. Dr. (Mrs) Mala Thapar Kuthiala, Faculty Incharge, School of Management, BahraUniversity, Wakhnaghat, P.O. Kiarighat, Distt. Solan, H.P. India, 173215. E. mail : dr.kuthiala.bahra.uni@gmail.com2. Dr. Sadhana Mahajan, Professor, Himachal Pradesh University Business School, Summerhill, Shimla, Himachal Pradesh, India, 171005. E. mail : sadhana.mahajan@gmail.comABSTRACT The conception of the present paper is based on the growth of interest on “valuedecade” particularly “value marketing” with respect to customer perceived value andconsequently to analyse the application of this concept in real life situations. . The paper attemptsto analyse the scope of application of the various FRP (Fibreglass reinforced plastics) products asproduct value positioning in the development of construction of structure and infrastructure. The research paper attempts to frame and propose a step by step approach tounderstanding the value positioning. Hence the Value Projection Hierarchy model is proposed,consisting of five steps. The first step is of understanding product knowledge for this Fibreglassreinforced plastic (FRP) products are taken. The second step highlights the customer informationhence the customers of Himachal Pradesh are studied in this paper. The third and the fourth stepconsists of understanding the product value and customer value respectively. The fifth and finalstep consists of matching the customer value with the product value.KEY WORDSConsumer behavior, Customer perceived value, Model for Value Projection Hierarchy, Product-Reinforced Fibreglass Plastics 112
  • 2. International Journal of Management (IJM), ISSN 0976 – 6502(Print), ISSN 0976 – 6510(Online),Volume 3, Issue 3, September- December (2012)INTRODUCTION According to Wikipedia encyclopedia, “The Customer Perceived Value of aproduct is the difference between the prospective customers evaluation of all the benefits & allthe cost of an offering & the perceived alternatives. Formally it may be conceptualized as therelationship between the consumers perceived benefits in relation to the perceived costs ofreceiving these benefits. It is often expressed as the equation: Value = Benefits / CostThe customers get benefits and assume costs.” [1] Further in understanding the consumer behaviour value, it can be expressed in bothqualitative and quantitative terms. In short it is the perceived gain for the customer, which isexpressed in both individual and environmental levels. At Individual level it is the reflection ofall physical, emotional, demographical and psychograpical level of the customer whereas atenvironmental level it is affected by economic, social, political, geographical and culturalfactors. “Marketers need to identify the anxieties and desires of the consumers to be able totarget their minds, hearts and spirits” quotes Kotlar, Kartajaya and Seiawan (2010, 39) [2]. Theysuggested some future models for Marketing 3.0, out of which one important model was Valued-Based Matrix model ( 2010, 42) which had be practically implemented be S.C. Johnson & Sons( p. 43) for social and environmental sustainability and by Timberland (p. 44) has a simplemission for making the products better. The perceived value can be expressed at both individual customer and organizationallevels. In practical application, to express, evaluate and interpret this perceived value inqualitative terms is very difficult. Values can be linked to consumer behavior in three ways,cultural values, consumption specific values and product specific values. Cultural values arerelated to security and happiness; consumption specific values are related to convenient shoppingand prompt service whereas product specific is related to ease of use and durability. Organizations with varied products and services practice different methods andtechniques to calculate their value which is perceived by their respective customers, dependingon the type of product and market environment. It is easier and more methodological to calculatethe quantitative aspect of perceived value when it is calculated in economic terms only. Itbecomes complicated when the qualitative aspect is taken into account. With the main aim ofsimplifying the direction of application of qualitative value projection in the marketing strategyof the organization the researcher has made an attempt to propose a model for value projectionHierarchy. The model proposed would be of aid, as it is a step by step approach from the aspectof the understanding of the customer from the organization point of view for planning andimplementation of various strategies in real life situations. 113
  • 3. International Journal of Management (IJM), ISSN 0976 – 6502(Print), ISSN 0976 – 6510(Online),Volume 3, Issue 3, September- December (2012)For this the researcher has selected a technologically advanced and revolutionary product likeReinforced fibreglass Plastics ( FRP) Products and have made an attempt to explain this modelwith relation to its marketing strategic planning which is based on consumer behaviour. Theladder of value projection Hierarchy is explained with reference to FRP products and theconsumers of Himachal Pradesh.VALUE PROJECTION HIERARCHY FOR REINFORCED FIBREGLASS PLASTIC(FRP) PRODUCTS FOR CONSUMERS OF HIMACHAL PRADESH The conceptual framework for this systematic consumer behaviour study is simplyexplained with the help of Value Projection Hierarchy consisting of five steps. As consumerbehaviour is the study of relationship between people and products and how they help to shapeeach other’s identities the framework of this study is based on the understanding of the relationshipbetween FRP products and the customers. Figure 1 The proposed Model of Value Projection Hierarchy for FRP Products for customers of Himachal Pradesh Matching the product value chain to the customers’ value chain STEP-5 Can you match FRP Product value chain to the customers’ value chain and communicate the conviction to him? STEP-4 Customers Values: Do you understand what the Himachal Pradesh customer values? Product Value: STEP-3 Are you 100% convinced about the values of FRP products? Customer Knowledge: STEP-2 Do you understand the customer of Himachal Pradesh? Product Knowledge:STEP-1 Do you know everything about the Reinforced Fibreglass Plastic (FRP) products?CONCEPTUAL MEANING OF EACH STEPStep 1 - Perfect knowledge of the product- ReinforcedStep 2 - Understanding of the customers’ hopes and valuesStep 3 - Product – offering the opportunities to the consumerStep 4 - To understand that the customer pays for only those features that he values. Let the Customers speak.Step 5 - How well do you communicate your offer? To communicate use not just words but also Philosophy of thoughts. 114
  • 4. International Journal of Management (IJM), ISSN 0976 – 6502(Print), ISSN 0976 – 6510(Online),Volume 3, Issue 3, September- December (2012)Step 1: Product Knowledge: Do you know everything about the product? FRP products arecomposite, polymer based revolutionary products, materials of 21st century (Bakshi and Sir Lal,[3], Professor of Chemistry, University of Delhi (2007, p. IT-7) which have many advantagesover the conventional materials (Finger, [4], 1972; Mc Garry, [5], 1970: Kurkjian &Matthewson, [6], 2007; Ryvkin & Aboudi, [7], 2007; Neto & Rovere [8], 2007; Mouhmid etal, [9], 2006; & Giraldi et al [10], 2005; NIIR – National Institute of Industrial Research, [11]used globally in construction industry. In our country FRP INSTITUTE- Madras (Regd. underTamil Nadu Societies Act 1975, No.70/1999) is a professional society for the advancement ofcomposite materials and their applications ( Thapar, [12], 2008, p.113).The FRP material, which has no effect on the ozone layer (Wilson, [13], (2001, p .161; Master andEla [14], (2008, p. 243)) has a versatile and wide range of applications that is based on therequirements of the customers whether commercial or residential (Kuthiala, [15] 2012, p.46). Itcan be easily moulded as per the requirements of the individuals, in addition to this it is easy tohandle at any stage and is much simpler to maintain. The FRP products can be an excellentconstruction material for most of the cold areas of Himachal Pradesh, by constructing sun roomsand glass houses. At present there is limited application of variety of FRP products (Kuthiala, ,[16], (2012), p. 612 ) for both purposes, commercial as well as residential, in spite of it being arevolutionary material and further supported by extensive use in the developed countries. Besidethe excellent growth in construction industry and excellent FRP products background the use offibreglass is limited to only one or two applications. There is a gap between the theoreticalproperties and practical purchase affecting the usage by the customers. From marketing point ofview this generates the need to fill up the gap by understanding the perception of the FRP productsfrom the customers’ point of view and in turn exploring into the potential new applications of FRPproducts in the state.Step 2: Customers Knowledge: Do you understand the customer?The proposed areas of customers in this research are from state of Himachal Pradesh. HimachalPradesh has varied geographical conditions, physically as well as climatically ( Singh, [17], 1997)hence influencing the needs and wants of the people of this area for different FRP products. One ofthe noticeable features of this region, to be kept in mind in the process of development is the closecorrespondence between the geological climatic aspects. The best results are achieved when thedevelopment is blended well within all sectors. There is a clear indication to mould developmentplans to local requirements, instead of just relying on standard models. Although the political leaders of Himachal Pradesh have laid the foundation for the basiceducation in the state, it is imperative that the people of Himachal Pradesh have to get ready for thegreat polymer industrial leap. While making the leap it is important to keep intact the base of thestate culture, art, architecture and built the future with the help of unique treasures of the past. Thestate is yet in the infancy stage as far as industrial development is concerned, but in the comingyears it has lots of industrial proposals are in the pipeline. The Himachal government has chalked 115
  • 5. International Journal of Management (IJM), ISSN 0976 – 6502(Print), ISSN 0976 – 6510(Online),Volume 3, Issue 3, September- December (2012)out a development plan of Rs. 3900 crore, for capital Shimla only, aiming to built infrastructureand give facelift to the town. State Chief Secretary, presiding over the meeting of senior officerson 24th November, 2006 said under the plan infrastructure such as bus terminals, parking lots,underground tunnels, shopping complexes and water supply system, cable cars etc. would be built.Hence this model can be of help to the people involved in the development of the state by creatingmore FRP product awareness (Kuthiala and Mahajan, [18], 2012, p. 38) among people of relatedchannels and end users and rendering services to the manufacturers through market developmentand research.Step 3: Product Value: Are you convinced about the value of FRP products?In the study this can be identified from the customers and purchasers of FRP products, who hadused this product and are willing to make a repeated purchase of the product whenever required. Since the last one and a half decade, a competitive customer – driven economy has beenemerging, due to which marketing activities, concepts and strategies have changed adaptingthemselves to the changing situations and environment. The abolition of licensing, andliberalization of market entry regulation since July 1991, has further added impetus to this process.New products with improved quality and standards are being announced virtually now and then,‘Down- sizing’, Re- structuring, and engineering are the words that have potent force for theexecutives in the present era. Hence it is important to understand the benefits of FRP products asnew construct material over the convectional construction materials. Another important challenge for product value is from the technology side becausepeople look for the product that has a good image and is backed by good technology. It is believedthat the multinationals have a better technology to back their products. Indian producers havealways imported technology, and have never made any attempt to Indianise them, improve uponthem and have a better technology of their own. To meet the challenges posed by themultinationals it is essential that the Indian producers should use better technology. Clarity ofthinking and focused strategy on improved technology and superior products are the keys to realizetheir potentials and hence to bring down the cost and improve the benefits of FRP products. In a Liberalized economy the need for such studies arise because a market oncebooming cannot remain forever for a particular company or product unless the company iscontinuously engaged in the innovation of technology and products as per the needs of theconsumers. So is true for FRP products. Moreover, the geographical, demographic, (Kuthiala andMahajan [19] ,2012) psychographic, cultural and social conditions, (Schiffman, Kaunf and Kumar,[20], (2010, p.59 )of the area have an impact on the consumption pattern and value of the product.Step 4: Customers Values: Do you understand the customers’ values?In this step we can identify what are the needs of the customers and how they can be satisfied bythe application of FRP products. This can be explained by the variables which attracts theconsumer towards the foreign brands produced by multinational companies (MNC), which can beclassified as firstly the Quality and secondly the environment friendly (Green product property) 116
  • 6. International Journal of Management (IJM), ISSN 0976 – 6502(Print), ISSN 0976 – 6510(Online),Volume 3, Issue 3, September- December (2012)and status symbol and then new way of life. Thus this leads to the scope for innovation in productdevelopment, and hence the results of such research would be useful for taking many investmentdecisions. If these decisions are based on the results of the empirical consumer researches andsurveys ( Kuthiala, [21] 2012, p. 827) which study impact of different variables, the chances oftaking correct decisions having significant effect on development would be higher. As a general rule, prestige products have been used as an example of extreme-endhigh-involvement decision making. The assumption is that prestige products are infrequentlypurchased, require a higher level of interest and knowledge, and strongly relate to the person self-concept. Therefore, reinforced fibreglass products can be classified as prestige products (Kuthialaand Mahajan, 2012, p. 43) in most of the applications depending on its usage by the consumer. Itis expected that people would have different perceptions of the level of prestige for the sameproduct and that the overall prestige level of a product would consider the prestige perceptionsfrom different consumers. The five perceived values of prestige are- price Conspicuous valuedepending on reference groups, quality, social, emotional, unique properties are particularly usefulfor comparing several construction products and thus for recognizing competitive advantages. Theproposed study arises from the need to understand the behaviour of the consumers of HimachalPradesh depending on the motivational factors to buy FRP products. Man has sought these unique mountain environments for different motivations:inspiration, scientific enquiry, adventure, health restoration, relaxation and spiritualism.Urbanization and infrastructural development is basically encouraged for economic reasons. Itpromises cash flow into the mountain regions having little economic opportunity, as it creates localemployment, holds back the process of depopulation in marginal areas, and finally correctsregional imbalance. Unfortunately in this region urbanization and infrastructural developmentgrows faster and haphazardly than the research that creates the questionable for sustainabledevelopment. By the time the plan is implemented, many shortcomings are obvious to the futuregeneration. Meaningful impact research in various environments (consumer behavior, ecology,economy, and other behavioral sciences) is very much needed for community based development,involving active participation of the indigenous population.Step 5 : Matching the product value chain to the customers value chain and in turn toexamine the appropriate ways of communicating the conviction to the customers. The Valuedecade is upon us. Jack Welch quotes, “If you cannot sell a top quality product as the world’slowest price, you are going to be out of the game…. The best way as to hold the customers is toconstantly figure out how to give them more for less.” Since a customer – driven economy hasbeen emerging in this region, due to which marketing activities, concepts and strategies havechanged adopting themselves to the changing situation and environment. The need of the hour is that the marketers need to deliver value. They need to deliverto their customers the value they are delivering with the relevant application of different FRPproducts. Complete customer satisfaction can be achieved by understanding customer requirementsand delivering superior quality FRP goods. In the present times it is must to provide the customer 117
  • 7. International Journal of Management (IJM), ISSN 0976 – 6502(Print), ISSN 0976 – 6510(Online),Volume 3, Issue 3, September- December (2012)with the continuous flow of new ideas/ offers and constantly enhance their performance levels tobuild up satisfaction among customers. Today, not only is the customer a king; now he the marketresearch head, R& D Chief and product development manager too infact he is the focus for theexistence of any organization. Now if the companies would like to retain their customers, thegolden path (and the only path) is to make your customers loyal to your product, by taking thembeyond satisfaction to the stage of customer delight. For this the various tools of Total quality Management can be used like Qualityfunction deployment (QFD) ( Besterfield et al , [22], 2012, p. 259; Suganthi and Samuel, [23],2012, p. 104), house of quality , etc. to match the customer requirement that is the customer valueof the people of Himachal Pradesh with the technical descriptors or FRP product specifications. AsFibreglass is a very versatile product and thus QFD tool can prove to be useful for matching thecustomer value with the product value.CONCLUSION To enhance the executive creativity and vision, marketing and consumer researchplays a vital role. Hence the need for the consumer research emerges so as to help themanufacturers and the marketers related with the construction industry of tomorrow with respect tothe utilization and investments made in FRP products as per the consumer behaviour of theprospective customers of Himachal Pradesh. However a majority of Indian companies do notinvest consistently and an adequate amount, but they want a quick harvest. Only those Indianproducts will be able to survive which have clear positioning, that is that, the product whichdepends not only on the advertising and promotional buck but is backed by the systematic researchwhich are based on what the consumer perceives as value delivery, for which such models can bean asset. The speed of action, the right package, the right price, the right up gradation at the righttime to fulfill the required needs of the customers’ are few variables which can be influenced bythe results of such a research work and subsequently aims to understand the factors influencingpurchase behaviour of the consumers from different situations, times and regions.ACKNOWLEDGEMENTThe authors wish to thank M/s Reliant Fibres, a Pioneer- Small Scale Industrial Unit in HimachalPradesh, under the proprietorship of Mr. Rajeev Kuthiala for sowing the seed of this researchproject. They provided the Literature and reading material regarding fibreglass and its variousproducts and properties, which was of immense value for the conception of this research study. 118
  • 8. International Journal of Management (IJM), ISSN 0976 – 6502(Print), ISSN 0976 – 6510(Online),Volume 3, Issue 3, September- December (2012)REFERENCES 1. Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia , (2012) Value (Marketing) Retrived from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Value_(marketing) 2. Kotlar, Philip., Kartajaya, Hermaan., and Seiawan, Iwan. (2010). From Products to Customers to Human Spirit-Marketing 3.0 ( Wiley India, New Delhi). 3. Bakhshi, A.K., & Sir Lal, Shankar. (2007). Electrically Conducting Polymers: Materials of the 21st Century. Proc. 2007 Seminar on RTSPC-II, Himachal Pradesh University. Retrieved March 23-24, 2007, from UGC –SAP National Seminar on Recent trends in Synthetic and Polymer Chemistry, p IT-7. 4. Finger, H.B. (1972). Recent developments in building systems. Phil.Trans.R.Soc.Lond A. 272, 503-531 (1972) p. 503. Printed in Great Britain. Retrieved 22 February, 2008 from http://www.jstor.org/jstor/gifcvtdir 5. Mc Garry, F.J. (1970). Building design with fibre reinforced materials. Proc, Roy. Soc.Lond.A.319, 59-68 (1970), p 59. Printed in Great Britain. Retrieved 22 February, 2008 from http://www.jstor.org/gifcvtdir 6. Kurkjian, Charles R., and Matthewson, M. John. (2007). Mechanical Strength and Reliability of Glass Fibers. Specialty Optical Fibers Handbook, p. 735-781. 7. Ryvkin, Michael., & Aboudi, Jacob. (2007). A continuum approach to the analysis of stress field in the fibre reinforced composite with a transverse crack. International Journal of Solids and Structures, Vol. 44, Issue 21, 15 October, 2007, p. 6826-6841. 8. Neto, Almir Barros da S. Santos., & Rovere, Henriette Lebre La. (2007). Flexural stiffness characterization of fibre reinforced plastic pultruded beams. Composite structures, Vol. 81, Issue 2, November 2007, p. 274-282. 9. Mouhmid, B., Imad, A., Benseddiq, N., Benmedakhène S., and Maazouz A. (2006). A study of the mechanical behaviour of a glass fibre reinforced polyamide 6.6: Experimental investigation. Polymer Testing, Volume 25, Issue 4, June 2006, P.544- 552. 10. Giraldi, A.L.F. de M., Bartoli, J.R., Velasco, J.I., & Mei L.H.I. (2005). Glass fibre recycled poly(ethylene terephthalate) composites: mechanical and thermal properties. Polymer Testing, Volume 24, Issue 4, June 2005, Pages 507-512. 11. NIIR – National Institute of Industrial Research, The Complete Technology Book on Fibre Glass, Optical Glass and Reinforced Plastics, 2007 (Asia Pacific Business Press Inc. New Delhi) 12. Thapar, Mala. (2008). A Study on Consumer Behaviour Providing insight into potential application of Reinforced Fibreglass Plastic products in Construction and other activities. doctoral diss. Himachal Pradesh University, Shimla. 371 pp. 13. Wilson, Alex. (Ed.) (2001). An Energy, Environmental, and Economic Resource guide for Federal Facility Managers and Designers(2nd ed.). Produced by BuildingGreen, Inc., Brattleboro, Vermont. Retrieved November 27,2007,from: http://www.nrel.gov/doc/fyo1osti/29267.pdf 14. Masters, Gilbert M & Ela, Wendell P. (2008). Introduction to Environmental Engineering and Science. (3rd Ed.).(New Delhi: PHI Learning Private Ltd.,) 15. Kuthiala, Mala.,(2012). Framing Marketing Strategy for Fibreglass Reinforced Plastic (FRP) Products. Proc of 1st National Conference on Indigenous Management practices- PANACEA- 2012. 46 , Datta Meghe Institute of Engineering, Technology and Research, 119
  • 9. International Journal of Management (IJM), ISSN 0976 – 6502(Print), ISSN 0976 – 6510(Online),Volume 3, Issue 3, September- December (2012) Wardha, in association with Indian society of Technical education, New Delhi. Retrieved March 2, 2012, 16. Kuthiala, Mala.,(2012). Framing Marketing Strategy for Fibreglass Reinforced Plastic (FRP) Products. DMIETR Journal Of Management Outlook, 1 (Mar 2012). 609-626. 17. Singh, Mian Goverdhan (1997), Himachal Pradesh, History, culture and economy .( Minerva Book House, Shimla). 18. Kuthiala, Mala, and Mahajan, Sadhana, (2012) , Green Marketing: Role of psychographic variables on awareness and purchase of FRP products. International Organization of Scientific Research IOSR Journal of Business Management, 5(2) Sep- Oct 2012. 36-46 19. Kuthiala, Mala, and Mahajan, Sadhana, (2012) , Green Marketing: Role of demographic variables on awareness and purchase of FRP products. Interntional Journal of Scientific and engineering Research, 3(11) November 2012. (approved for publication) 20. Schiffman, Leon G.,, kanuf, Leslie Lazar & Kumar, Ramesh S, Wisenblit, Joseph. (2010). Consumer Behavior (10 th Edition): (Pearson Education, Inc Chennai, Delhi, Chandigarh) 21. Kuthiala, Mala.,(2012), Demographical effect on awareness and purchase of FRP Products , Proc of 1st International Conference on Emerging Trends For Value Creation In the Era of Knowledge Economy-ELIXIR 2012, Paper presented and awarded at the 2012 conference, Datta Meghe Institute of Management Studies, Nagpur, in association with Northern Illinois University, Illinois, United States and Lawrence University , Michigan. Retrieved February 17 &18, 2012, 824-852.. 22. Besterfield , Dale H., Besterfield-Michna, Carol., Besterfield Glen H., Besterfield-Sacre Mary., Urdhwareshe, Hemant., Urdhwareshe, Rashmi . (2012) Total Quality rd Management. Revised 3 edition. Pearson, New delhi, India 23. Suganthi, L., and Samuel, Ananad A. ( 2012). Total Quality Management. PHI Learning Private Limited, New Delhi. 120